Assessment of Knowledge, Attitude and Practices (KAP) on Hantavirus Infections at Community Level in Mbeya Region, Tanzania
Ntinginya, Elias N
Shirima, Gabriel M.
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Background: Hantaviruses are zoonotic RNA viral pathogens of public health concern in Tanzania and worldwide. These viruses circulate in both human and reservoir host in Tanzania, however, there is a gap in the assessment of knowledge, Attitude, and practices (KAP) which contributes to the transmission of the virus from Reservoir host to human being. This study aimed to assess the level of community knowledge, attitude, and practices that lead to the transmission of the virus from the reservoir host to a human being. Methods: Cross-sectional questionnaire survey was conducted in the four districts of Mbeya region between June 2018 to July 2018, where questionnaire data were obtained from 438 participants. Descriptive statistics and Chi-square (X2 ) test were used to explain the response of the participants. Results: (22/66) 33.3% and (22/372) 5.91% of both Health care workers and other members of the community, respectively had a knowledge about Hantavirus infections. (219/438) 50% of all participants have rodent breeding sites in their houses. However, (409/438) 93.4% of all participants did not wear masks when cleaning those breeding sites and this increases the risk for the transmission of Hantavirus infections. Discussion: Low level of knowledge for Hantavirus infections observed in the community increases the uncertainty of patient management as well as endangers the community health due to an increase of practices which increases the chance of pathogen transmission to a human being from the reservoir host. Conclusion: Updating the community about Hantavirus infection is more important as far as public health is concerned.